The 10 College Football Programs Still In The BCS Championship Conversation

Todd KaufmannSenior Writer ISeptember 29, 2010

The 10 College Football Programs Still In The BCS Championship Conversation

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    With four weeks already gone in the 2010 college football season, the BCS picture is starting to become a little clearer with each week that goes by.

    You have several teams still unbeaten that can make their case for a spot in the national championship game if they continue to win. Though there will be a select few that will still be in the conversation with one loss.

    We'll have to see how the season plays itself out but there are a few teams that could end the season without a loss and we could have some problems on our hands if one of those teams is Boise State. There will be all sorts of questions and opinions on whether or not they deserve to be there. You could also say the same about TCU.

    For the rest of the nation, going unbeaten almost guarantees you a spot on the biggest stage in college football and playing for the biggest prize in the industry.

    Here are 10 schools who still hold a stake in that championship game going into week five of the college football season.

No. 10: LSU Tigers

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    The LSU Tigers, as far as the rankings are concerned, sit at the number 10 spot in the Coaches/USA Today poll. They're also unbeaten.

    While they had to fight hard for wins against the two ranked teams they did play, North Carolina and West Virginia, winning both by a combined 12 points, a win is a win in the SEC.

    They have two gimme games left on the schedule against Louisiana-Monroe and McNeese State, but you can probably chalk up wins over Tennessee and Ole Miss as well seeing as they're both at home.

    Where the Tigers may run into trouble is on the road against Florida, Auburn, and Arkansas as well as having a showdown at home against top ranked Alabama in six weeks.

No. 9: Florida Gators

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    The Florida Gators have had four weeks of a mediocre schedule. Three of their first four games, Kentucky, South Florida, and Miami (OH) all were played at home with their lone road game coming against Tennessee.

    It's the next four weeks that will make or break Florida's chances in this conversation as they will face Alabama, LSU, Mississippi State, and Georgia with three of those four coming at home.

    The Gators play four games on the road all year. They can't complain that they weren't set up nicely.

No. 8: TCU Horned Frogs

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    I know TCU fans won't be happy that I have the Horned Frogs so far down on the list, but let's be honest, even if the Frogs go unbeaten this season, which I don't think is likely, they're going to need a whole lot of help to get into the BCS title game.

    For right now, at 4-0, they are absolutely still in the conversation. Win, and let the rest take care of itself.

No. 7: Nebraska Cornhuskers

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    After a win against Washington a few weekends ago, the Nebraska Cornhuskers looked to be one of the legit teams that could run the table in the Big 12.

    Fast forward one week and they put up just 17 points against South Dakota State in a 17-3 win.

    They are among the unbeaten and they are one of the best teams in the country. They just need to continue to prove it the rest of the way and it starts this weekend in Manhattan, Kansas against Kansas State.

No. 6: Oklahoma Sooners

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    The Oklahoma Sooners are lucky not to have two losses already. If they did, we wouldn't be talking about them at this point.

    They struggled against Utah State to open the season before blowing out Florida State in week two. After that, both Air Force and Cincinnati easily could have picked up wins and upset the Sooners.

    This weekend, they'll turn their attention to their hated rivals to the south, the Texas Longhorns, as both teams will meet in Dallas, Texas for the Red River Shootout at the Cotton Bowl.

    While this game doesn't quite have the feeling of years passed, it's still a big game to both schools.

No. 5: Stanford Cardinal

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    Stanford is starting to make some serious noise in college football after a solid win on the road against Notre Dame last weekend.

    They have their biggest test of the season this weekend as they travel to Eugene, Oregon to face the fourth ranked Ducks at Autzen Stadium.

    Win that one and they may be more in the conversation.

No. 4: Oregon Ducks

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    If it wasn't for seven Arizona State turnovers last weekend, I don't know that we'd be talking about Oregon right now.

    But, alas, the Ducks snuck away with a win and will be ready for their show down against Stanford this weekend.

    They have the offensive firepower to keep Stanford at bay, they have the fans to keep Stanford on their heels, but can their defense step up after taking last weekend off?

    Even a win over Stanford won't give us much insight to what kind of damage they could do for the remainder of the season. Let's not forget they still have USC, Arizona, and Oregon State looming large.

No. 3: Boise State

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    Boise State is the one team that could throw a wrench in the BCS system if they were to win out, which is in no way a lock at this point.

    They've gotten past the toughest part of their schedule with just their conference schedule in front of them. However, don't look past Nevada and Fresno State as both are very much improved from last season.

    If the Broncos can keep their margin of victory well over 15 for the remainder of the season and stay unbeaten, they could very well make their case for a spot in the title game.

No. 2: Ohio State Buckeyes

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    As it stands right now, the Ohio State Buckeyes are slated to play in the national championship game alongside Alabama.

    They are one of the two best teams in the country but with their conference schedule coming up, we'll see just how ready Ohio State is to assume their spot in the game at the end of the season.

No. 1: Alabama Crimson Tide

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    I wasn't sure just how for real Alabama was leading up to their game against Arkansas on the road. I wanted to see if they were really the team we saw last year or if they were going to disappoint and fall to the Razorbacks.

    Well, they showed me a little something as they came from behind to overtake Arkansas and win that ballgame.

    It's the reason they're the defending national champions and could go unbeaten again this season. First test, however, will come this weekend as the Florida Gators come to town.